Building Renovation Supports Foundation’s Mission

The Foundation for Evangelism’s world headquarters at Lake Junaluska, N.C., has housed the offices of the organization for over 15 years. With more staff living and working remotely in other parts of the country, we asked the question – how can the Foundation be a better steward of this incredible resource gifted to us by donors and supporters?

In recent years the headquarters building has welcomed the offices of the SEJ Heritage Center, the Smoky Mountain District of The United Methodist Church, and two other individual tenants.

In 2019, the board engaged a study to evaluate space utilization statistics and explore the potential for renovation of the headquarters building. The purpose was to allow the building, one of our greatest assets, to be self-sustaining and allowing donated funds to further the mission and vision of the Foundation. With funding secured through an exceptional gift from the Wilma Carlisle Estate, the Foundation’s board of trustees boldly moved ahead with the work in early 2021.

On November 7, the Foundation board and staff held an open house and rededication of the headquarters building. Donors, current and former staff, trustees, and friends from the community celebrated the renovation and ministry potential of The Foundation for Evangelism world headquarters.

Gaye Nell Heck and Mary Nell Fox (center) are joined by Rev. Allen Black (board chair) and Bishop Richard Looney (episcopal director emeritus) at the building rededication.

As part of the rededication, persons who were instrumental in the construction of the original building were honored. Paul and Kitten Ervin were honored with the naming of the building wing which still houses the Foundation and two other Methodist organizations. Mr. Ervin, a former executive director for the Foundation, shared his appreciation for all those who helped make the headquarters building possible.

Paul and Kitten Ervin (right) joined by Bishop Richard Looney (episcopal director emeritus), Jane Wood (president), and Rev. Allen Black (board chair).

Mr. Royce and Jane Reynolds were honored by the naming of the wing which previously served as a conference center for events and trainings (which was named for the couple in the original construction). Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds have been long-time supporters of the Foundation. When Mr. Reynolds passed away in 2020, the Foundation joined so many who mourned the loss of this exceptional Christian philanthropist.

The Foundation for Evangelism’s staff and board of trustees are excited to welcome four new tenants to the building in 2021. The final construction phase is set to be completed in early 2022.

Honorary Trustee, Mary Brooke Casad, greeted new trustee, Brian Hammons and wife, Kim, at the rededication service.

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